1. Request RC account
  2. Reset RC account password
  3. Generate OAuth token
  4. Download Cisco AnyConnect VPN client
  5. Connect to VPN

Request RC account

To establish a VPN connection to the NCF you will need a Harvard FAS Research Computing (RC) account and it must be approved

  1. Go to
  2. Select Users without a HarvardKey for external collaborators or User with a HarvardKey for Harvard users
  3. Enter your account information
    • For the job title field, select EXTERNAL TO HARVARD if an external collaborator, or your harvard job title.
    • For PI Name and Approver Name type the name of the PI you are researching under or collaborating with, e.g. Randy Buckner.
    • Department should autofill to Neuroimaging Compute Facility. Do not select "Psychology" as your department!
    • if applicable, Under Services, select NCF compute resource access.
    • Do not select any additional services or instruments.
    • Wait for account approval. Feel free to email your collaborator if you need support.

After your account has been approved, you will be able to install the necessary software and VPN into the NCF.

Reset RC account password

If you need to reset the password for an existing Research Computing account, use

Generate an OAuth token

To generate an OAuth token, you will need to install a small Java utility on your computer or use a mobile application such as Google Authenticator or Duo. Follow the instuctions starting with this:

Download Cisco AnyConnect VPN client

Once you have access to the OAuth token, you will need to install the AnyConnect VPN client using the platform specific instructions on

Or you can find the AnyConnect VPN client on (you will be asked to login with your Research Computing username and password)

Connect to VPN

When starting the VPN client for the first time, you will be asked to connect to a VPN server. You should enter The following dialog window will ask for three more bits of information

  • Username@Realm: your Research Computing username with @ncf at the end, for example jdoe@ncf
  • Password: your Research Computing password
  • Verification Code: your OAuth token as described above